Story and photos by Manos Angelakis
Additional photo courtesy Hotel Bristol

Hotel Bristol Geneva Exterior

Hôtel Bristol Genève
Rue du Mont-Blanc 10
CH-1201 Genève
+41 22 716 57 00

During a recent press trip to Switzerland we were lucky enough to spend a few days at the landmark Hôtel Bristol in Geneva, near the Mont Blanc Bridge and Rue du Rhône. For a hotel location is paramount, and Hotel Bristol is perfectly positioned between the main railway station and the lake. The hotel is in the center of the city near the Square du Mont-Blanc - a little over a block from the lakeside front and in the same vicinity as other renowned hotels and less than five minute walk from the central rail station - making exploring Geneva and its environs easily accessible. The original 1851 building was entirely redesigned in 2020/2021 by well known French decorator Annie Zéau; the award-winning Bristol can now be favorably compared for facilities and service quality, with 5-star properties that abound in this town.

It is quite unusual to have a starred hotel outperforming its official rating. The usual situation is a hotel that under performs; what I would call a “property with delusions of grandeur.” But the Bristol is actually rated as a four-star superior hotel and offers 5-star level amenities and services; well above its official rating!

Hôtel Bristol Geneva

Through my many years of staying in luxury 5-star properties in every major world city I’m used to encountering the atmosphere of sophistication that I found at the Bristol. Most personnel is multi-lingual. The room we stayed in had a cream-and-gold color scheme that is the coloring of the general Art Deco design of the hotel. Exceptional photographs in gilded frames decorated our spacious room’s walls and the bathroom had a glass enclosed rain shower, marble tiles and a nice Molton Brown amenities package. De rigueur in luxury hotels nowadays are heated towel racks and large lighted shaving/make-up mirror, but an extra-special feature at the Bristol is an anti-fog bathroom mirror to enjoy those hot steamy showers and still have a useable mirror. There was a well stocked coffee machine at the room’s desk, convenient for a cup of tea or a shot of caffeine during the day or night. And, very important nowadays, there is free WiFi throughout the hotel. I also appreciated the fact that, having size 12 wide shoes, the slippers in the room were of the appropriate size and I did not have to struggle to fit them onto my feet!

Hotel Bristol Bar

There is a well stocked bar at the ground floor near the entrance. An interesting architectural feature is the blue-and-cream-carpeted original 1851 spiral staircase now hung with museum quality portraits of generations of the Jacqulot-du-Boisrouvray family. The privately owned hotel has been in the hands of the Du Boisrouvray family since 1972.

Despite being at the heart of the city, the hotel is quiet thanks to very effective double glazing of the windows. The breakfast was buffet-style and very ample, featuring fresh fruit and fruit preserves and some very nice chocolate-filled brioche, a variety of cheeses and cold cuts and scrambled eggs and sausage or bacon but without the freshly cooked egg station that many luxury properties now have as part of their breakfast experience. I was able to have my favorite breakfast, creamy plain yogurt topped with lots of aromatic honey. Because of our hectic schedule, we did not have a chance to personally experience all the amenities available in the hotel such as the Gault et Millau rated Restaurant “Côté Square” or the full service spa, but what we did experience was at a very high level.

Hôtel Bristol Reception Library

Another unusual feature available to guests on registration is a public transportation free pass for Geneva that is included in the room rate. In-town transportation in all the Swiss cities we visited was great with trolleys, buses, trams and taxis plentifully available day or night.

All in all, staying at the Bristol was a very pleasurable experience and I appreciate the effort the owners and management has put in reviving a very good hotel in a city filled with very good properties.




© April 2023 LuxuryWeb Magazine. All rights reserved.


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